For days a 2-year-old mixed breed struggled to survive after being found starving and nearly decapitated.
But on Tuesday, seven days after being rushed to a veterinarian, Hope died from her injuries, Monroe County Sheriff John Cary Bittick said.
“We all were hoping she was going to recover,” Sheriff Bittick said. “Apparently her injuries were too severe.”
The dog, which a rescuer named Hope, required surgery to repair a severed trachea and other injuries, Dr. Butler Cladwell has said.
Ms. Griff Conti, one of Hope’s followers, said she was having difficulty breathing as a result of a paralyzed larynx and collapsed trachea, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
After realizing that Hope was not going to breathe on her own, Dr. Caldwell’s staff made the tough decision to sedate the dog in preparation to put her to sleep, the AJC said.
“Hope died yesterday in the presence of more love and compassion than she had received in the previous 18 months that she lived,” Ms. Conti said in an email.
Hope’s owner Mr. Monterion Dionte Davis, 19, remained in jail Wednesday, almost a week after he was accused of tying the dog’s neck with an electrical cord and leaving her for dead.
Investigators charged Mr. Davis, who was issued a $15,000 bond, with aggravated cruelty to animals. It’s the maximum charge for such a crime, and therefore, will remain the same, although the dog has died, Sheriff Bittick said.
“This was an awful crime and although Hope was suffering, at least she was given the best care that could be provided.”
On July 19, someone spotted the dog across the street from where her owner lived on Union Hill Drive and called the county’s animal catcher who took her to the pound, the sheriff said.
It was still unclear Wednesday why the dog was not immediately taken to a veterinarian and how long she suffered before received medical attention.
An animal advocacy group, Save-A-Pet found out about the dog’s severe injuries and took the dog from the pound to Caldwell Veterinary Hospital, Sheriff Bittick said.
The veterinarian took one look at the dog and called the sheriff’s department.
“I’ve been sheriff for almost 30 years and this is the worst case of animal abuse I’ve ever seen by far,” Sheriff Bittick said.
Sheriff’s investigators said Mr. Davis, who has owned the dog since she was a puppy, admitted to tying an electrical wire around the dog’s neck, which left her partially decapitated.
“He tied the electrical wire around her throat and it did the damage and he just left her for dead,” Sheriff’s Bittick said.
The dog was also severely malnourished, weighing 24 pounds when she was found. She should have weighed at least 60 pounds, the sheriff said.